At SpotX, we are always looking for new and innovative ways to support employee growth and development. Our participation in Bertelsmann’s MEDIAN initiative is the latest way we live one of our seven core values: “We believe in our people.” Bertelsmann is a media company that operates in roughly 50 countries around the world. It includes the broadcaster RTL Group, which, in turn, includes SpotX.
What is MEDIAN?
MEDIAN is a highly selective international rotational data science mentorship program allowing data scientists to work with and experience up to three different businesses units in the international Bertelsmann portfolio over the course of fifteen months. As the lead of the Data Intelligence team at SpotX, one of Bertelsmann’s data driven companies, I’m excited to help guide the start of the program, and we are proud to be one of the RTL Group’s rotations available to MEDIAN participants. As the program targets globally-minded data scientists for rotations both in the US, as well as Europe, SpotX’s business model and data sets are particularly relevant for this program.
SpotX & Bertelsmann’s Commitment to Employee Development
Bertelsmann has numerous innovative employer branding programs such as Talent Meets Bertelsmann, Creative Management and one of the newest programs is the MEDIAN Data Science Program. Immanuel Hermreck, the Chief Human Resources Officer at Bertelsmann, mentioned in an April Press Release:
“Analyzing large volumes of data has become increasingly important for many of our businesses, for instance to better adapt products or services to customer requirements. Bertelsmann’s endowment of more than 15,000 scholarships in the data science field was already a big step, and now we are following it up with our new rotational program. It is specifically aimed at target groups that are particularly relevant for Bertelsmann: graduates with degrees in data science, statistics, applied mathematics, physics and, of course, IT. We want to offer them the opportunity to expand their knowledge and pursue a career in one of the most promising occupational fields. We are convinced that our innovative ‘MEDIAN Data Science Program’ is a strategic contribution that will strengthen the ongoing digitalization of Bertelsmann.”
How the MEDIAN Program Is Set Up at SpotX
I will pair up each rotational data scientist that comes through with a SpotX data scientist to make sure that they have all the help and resources available for success. Five months is not a long time in the world of large scale data science so we will be providing a reasonable project to tackle. However, at the petabyte scale, even the smaller problems do not get solution algorithms into production in such a short rotation. That said, I will empower each rotational data scientist by setting realistic expectations and encouraging team collaboration so they will not only contribute to our team, but also gain highly sought after skills for their next challenges.
Each division of the program will provide a unique opportunity for the participants to learn and contribute. At SpotX, we are encouraging participants to bring their own ideas on how to improve the SpotX platform! Through machine learning, inference modeling and statistical analysis, our Data Science Team:
- Optimizes revenue for our advertisers and publishers;
- Reduces inefficiencies in infrastructure;
- Improves how SpotX processes our 10+ billion transactions and 20+ terabytes of data each day; and
- Delivers insights to leadership.
The SpotX rotation will include use of some beloved large scale data science tools, including Apache Spark and Apache Hive, used by our data scientists and big data engineers. While applications for 2018 have ended and applicant selection is complete, if you’re interested in learning more about Data Science at Bertelsmann or staying up to date with MEDIAN, click here for more information.
Stephanie Rivera, Sr. Director of Data Intelligence